Friday, September 25, 2009
Which means trouble for her, in that she's run her campaign criticizing the very coalition a) she created and b) she'll be forced back into.
2) So now Iran is again accused of making fissible material for bombs. The sense I get is they are doing this, but El Baradei has been put in the unenviable position of having to play diplomat-pawn for the Russians and Chinese.
If you read between the lines, you'll also get a sense as to why Barack Obama has pulled our missiles out of eastern Europe. The linkage between that event and the bold statement by the US, UK, and France this morning speaks loudly.
3) The economic power of the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) has been realized: the G-20 is now the new G-8. Russia already was in the G-8 as the economic entity succeeding the Soviet Union, but now it is joined by the three other fastest growing economies.
4) While she's not the first Mansonite to die, Susan Atkins played a far more central role in the serial killings of the family. Many people, myself included, point to this abomination, the Tate-La Bianca killings as the true end of the Sixties and the end of the Hippie movement. If you are unfamiliar, or not that familiar with the story, let me put it in persepctive for you: I oppose the death penalty on all grounds and in all cases. This is the one case I may have made an exception. Read up on the murders. Ed Sanders, formerly of The Fugs, has some inside baseball that will creep you out.
5) It is interesting to me that Arab terrorists are targeting us with more vigor now than during the Bush administration. I don't think the Bushies did that good a job of keeping us safe. More, I think it's an attempt to probe for weaknesses, and it's nice to see that President Obama has focused on solving cases, not blowing up mosques.
6) By the way, on that note, it's nice to see Tom Ridge give a thumbs down to many of the things the Bushies did, of course, but dude, where were you when you could have made a difference????
7) Water, water, everywhere, and not a drop to drink. Yet.
8) It was twenty years ago today, Pam Anderson brought her boobs to the Bay...
9) I didn't realize "tent revivals" included Viagra? Gimme that ol' time religion! Hallelujah!
10) Hm, think my boss would mind if I took an extended coffee break?
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Sept. 24 (Bloomberg) -- An experimental vaccine prevented HIV infections for the first time, a breakthrough that has eluded scientists for a quarter century.
A U.S.-funded study involving more than 16,000 volunteers in Thailand found that a combination of ALVAC, made by Paris- based Sanofi-Aventis SA, and AIDSVAX, from VaxGen Inc., of South San Francisco, cut infections by 31.2 percent in the people who received it compared with those on a placebo, scientists said today in Bangkok. Neither vaccine had stopped the virus that causes AIDS when tested separately in previous studies.
The finding represents a revival in a campaign that appeared to stall just two years ago when use of Merck & Co.’s experimental Ad5 vaccine boosted some people’s chances of infection in a study. The latest result will transform future research, said Mitchell Warren, director of the New York-based AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition.
31.2% is something, certainly nothing to sneeze at, but it means there's clues in there for a truly preventative vaccine or combination of vaccines.
I'm old enough to remember when sex could be had without any ill effects except maybe guilt. Syphillis, gonnorhea both seemed to be curable and AIDS and herpes were on a distant horizon.
I've often wondered if the spread of AIDS, HIV and even herpes was responsible, in part, for the rise of conservatism in this country. After all, when we could ball freely, we tended to be a little more open to new ideas as well as new experiences.
Once sex was clamped down upon, it seemed like everyone's rectums got a little more retentive, a little more conservative. Wearing a condom became a metaphor as well as a reality, forcing people to think back inside the box (um, pun not intended. Mostly.) because outside, alone, naked, was scary and a little dangerous.
Freedom became something negotiable, to an extent. You could be free, but you had to be ultravigilant, and once you had to be ultravigilant, that required an effort and efforts mean people will look for easy ways out.
Like the fox and the grapes, people began to look at sex as if it wasn't important, that sex was OK if it was readily accessible but to actually go out and pursue it became a matter of work. And who wants to work at sex?
So we saw a rise in monogamous relationships, but we also saw a rise in values that hearkened back to the Fifties, to a time when, yes, people had sex, lots of it, but no one talked about it, so everyone assumed no one else was getting any.
I dunno...just a thought.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
On Tuesday, Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) described the health care legislation being considered by the Senate Finance Committee as a "stunning assault on liberty" due to a provision that would require individuals to buy insurance.
Earlier in the week, the individual mandate also came under attack when Tim Phillips, who heads Americans for Prosperity, described it as an assault on individual liberty.
"When you have health care, that's a choice that impacts yourself," Phillips told MSNBC's Hardball. "Drivers' insurance impacts other drivers you may have accidents with."
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The NEA and the White House did encourage a handpicked, pro-Obama arts group to address politically controversial issues under contentious national debate. That fact is irrefutable.
Monday, September 21, 2009